Winter weights now allowed on S. Sask. highways

A short delay in the opening of southwestern Saskatchewan’s secondary highways to trucks bearing full winter weights is now over.

The provincial highways ministry on Monday said winter weights are in effect "immediately" on all designated highways south of the Trans-Canada and west of Highway 39, which runs southeast from Moose Jaw through Weyburn to Estevan.

Weight restrictions on designated secondary highways are normally lifted between Nov. 16 and Dec. 1, as the roads freeze solid enough to handle winter weights.

This month, however, "road structures had not sufficiently frozen due to the mild fall weather," the ministry said. The delay was announced last Wednesday.

Having monitored road conditions since then, ministry officials "now deem it feasible to allow highways in the region to operate at winter weights," the province said Monday.

The extra weights usually allowed on highways during winter can damage the pavement and structure of roads that aren’t yet sufficiently frozen.

Related story:

S. Sask. roads not cold enough for heavy trucks, Dec. 1, 2011

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